Kenner und Liebhaber - Yet another look

Yonatan Bar-Yoshafat

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4 Scopus citations


Two fundamental categories of non-professional musicianship types flourished during the eighteenth century: the expert (Kennet) and the amateur (Liebhaber). Though often conceived as self-evident, these two concepts in fact raise various interpretative difficulties. This article discuses these difficulties with reference to some examples from C. P. E. Bach's famous Für Kenner und Liebhaber set, and, based on Kant's concepts of Taste and Genius and Goethe's concept of Dilettantism, proposes that the meanings of Kenner and Liebhaber can be understood not only in terms of hierarchical differentiation or shared ideal of perception, but as two equally-important musical conducts, required for composers and audiences alike (depending on context).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-47
Number of pages29
JournalInternational Review of the Aesthetics and Sociology of Music
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jun 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • C. P. E. Bach
  • Conventions
  • Dilettantism
  • Genius
  • Goethe
  • Kant
  • Kenner
  • Liebhaber
  • Musical Conduct and Perception
  • Originality
  • Taste


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